Monday, September 15, 2014

Random thoughts (6)

A Subaru Forester

When the spell-checker in Microsoft Word detects no errors, it tells me “You’re good to go!” I am offended by this puerile, presumptuous language. On the other hand, I realize that the fellow who wrote it may be retarded; if so, it wouldn’t be fair of me to judge him by normal grown-up standards. On the other other hand,* why does Microsoft allow such employees to communicate with customers? Of course, it could have been worse; it could have been “Your good to go!”

Where I live and work (Meredith, New Hampshire), a portion of the shore of Lake Winnipesaukee is historically known as “Church Landing.” A local developer bought Church Landing and built a beautiful but very pricey inn on it. Confusingly, he named the inn “Church Landing” and the inn’s restaurant “The Lakehouse Grille.” It seems to me that the inn would more logically have been named “The Lakehouse on Church Landing.” Or maybe there’s something here that I am misinterpreting.**

Two years ago, on the advice of my doctor, I set out to lose 90 pounds. After I had lost the first 30 or 40, people started asking me, “How did you do it?” When I told them the simple truth, “I ate less,” they typically let out a nervous laugh and then asked, “No, really, how did you do it?” Apparently my candid answer was unwittingly embarrassing people by reminding them that they had allowed themselves to be distracted by the $20-billion-dollars-a-year weight-loss industry, whose aggregate message seems to be, “You can’t lose weight just by eating less. Trust us. Our book / plan / group / seminar / pill /surgery is the way.” So nowadays when people ask how I lost weight, I say either “I don’t remember” or “I think it may be cancer.” They seem to be more satisfied with these obvious lies than with the simple truth. I give them what they want and they leave me alone, which is what I want.

On a recent flight from Boston to Miami, I noticed that the airline boarded us coach passengers by groups. Good method, except they do it backwards: They board from fore to aft (front to rear). In other words, Group 1 boards first, in the front section of coach, which forces Group 2 to wait until every single slowpoke in Group 1 has stowed his carry-on bags and has finished asking stupid questions of the stewardesses. Then Group 3 has to wait for every slowpoke in Group 2, and so on. It would be quicker and easier to board the coach passengers from rear to front. How do I know this? Simply by recalling that that’s how airlines used to do it, decades ago.

Here in New Hampshire, many of my neighbors drive Subarus.*** I hear that Subarus are good on snow, of which we get plenty. And yet I don’t recall ever seeing a Subaru ad. So where does Subaru advertise?

The Takeaway: Be here now.
* Every editor should have at least three metaphorical hands.
**I have no financial interest in the restaurant, inn or lake.
***I have no financial interest in Subaru or its parent company, Fuji Heavy Industries.

See disclaimer.

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